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So you wanna be a Gaiscioch Tester/Pioneer?

Taoiseach de na Arach Glas
Foghladha
Taoiseach de na Arach Glas
  • GW2: Foghladha.2506
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Posted On: 09/04/2013 at 10:43 AM
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Greetings,

Over the past few months several Beta/Alpha opportunities have landed on our doorstep allowing me to get a few people into various tests. As of right now we have 3 current Pioneer Teams working in 3 different games. While these opportunities give these players a chance to see the game early in it's development, it also can give the wrong image of a game and ruin the chance of a player ever playing the game. Before you decide you would like to join a Gaiscioch Pioneer team there are a few things I would like all of you to consider and make sure your attitudes are in line with our goals. Beta Testing under the Gaiscioch name is NOT to be taken lightly. It is a commitment to the game developers to be there when they need you, report feedback back to them in a constructive manner, and also is our bridge between Gaiscioch and Developer in infancy form. If we do well and make a name for ourselves in their beta's we then have future opportunities. If our people show up for a week then give up, it gives us a real bad name.

Things to Consider While Testing

#1 You are testing in a Development Environment

Most of the games you have tested in "Open Beta" or "Head Start" are largely completed games undergoing polishing and stress testing. The programs that Gaiscioch will get you involved in are what make those games seem so functional and fun to play. Before ANY public test, Closed Beta, Alpha, and Focus Groups helped shape the game. There are many types of tests that you may become involved in.

Focus Groups (2-4 Years Pre-Launch) - Designed to pitch idea's and get feedback from key community members. Usually you watch video's and fill in surveys about what you saw in the video. Occasionally you will get a short hands on. In this stage your choices and responses will quite frankly send this game in a certain direction during development. If you don't respond or take this lightly you could send this game in the wrong direction wasting development time.

Alpha Testing (1-3 Years Pre-Launch) - This is the first hands-on test that you can get into. Typically these are limited playtimes, are specific systems tests, and are very very rough. Content is not in game yet, art models are placeholders, and various systems are turned off or not plugged in entirely. If a "Play-Before-You-Buy" or PBYB as I like to call them gets their hands on this version they will try it out for about 2 days and quit. They will then take the stance this game sucks I'll never play it and be lost forever. This stage of development is where you as gamers have the most power to help build an awesome game. You need to see the developers vision, combined with your ideas, to help pitch changes and improvements to make this game awesome. If you don't like something you need to share it. If you like something you need to share it. Feedback is critical in this stage. One and Done players not only hurt development but they hurt our reputation. If we find Gaiscioch members doing the PBYB they will be added to the no-fly list and not be allowed in any test we assist with in the future. 

Alpha Testers need to be willing to play in a rough version of the game and keep coming back. In turn, they will have the closest contact with developers, see the game from infancy to live, and have a hand in making the game the best possible game on the market. It's success or failure will be at your fingertips and how the game does is a direct reflection of the testing team's ability to identify trouble spots before it goes into beta.

Closed Beta (3 Months - 2 Years Pre-Launch) - This is typically an expanded audience test. Sometimes it's covering many of the same things we saw in Alpha. Again the game is nowhere near completion or in a state where the PBYB will get a justified opinion of the game. Through closed beta a lot of the pieces will start turning on. You will see changes every time you log in. Entire systems may become entirely different. As more players hit the systems, problems are identified, reported, and fixed. This is the phase of the game where the most change happens. You will see art get put into place, engines getting smoothed out, game systems get overhauled, and sometimes even the direction of the game change entirely. In past tests I've seen the entire name of the game change along with it's focus. I've seen games that we're built for PvP get shifted into a PvE focused title. I've seen games that looked like freeware or shareware that I wouldn't spend a dime on get worked over and polished and go on to win awards for innovation. Closed beta is like a child from 3-5 years old. Your feedback will make or break the game. This is not something to be taken lightly and you should be committed to seeing the game through even if you don't like where it's currently at.

Open Beta (1-3 Months Pre-Launch) - This should be called Marketing/Press Demo. At this point the Closed Beta, Alpha, and Focus Groups have shaped the game to where it's going to be. Open Beta's are usually prelaunch stress tests and final polish. Very little will change in this time and the game is considered "Live Ready". The entire purpose of an open beta is to stress test and to give players a chance to try before they buy raising pre-orders and getting the first round of media blitz out the gate. This is where they mobilize their twitter army, their bloggers, and their news pushes. If you are a PBYB player this is what test you need to play. The game is essentially ready to go pending final tweeks and polish. 

Testing As A Gaiscioch

The Gaiscioch over it's history has taken part in all of these stages of development. Sometimes for games that we end up turning into a chapter, other times for games that aren't even remotely close to being something we as a community will break into. If you get the opportunity to be a Gaiscioch tester we expect the following of you. If you can not live up to these requirements then I ask you do not ask to test and do not partake in testing.

  • NEVER speak of your involvement to anyone. Not even your fish.
  • Show up to at least 75% of the Scheduled Tests
  • Fill in the surveys, even if their long and annoying.
  • Post on the tester forums
  • Participate in discussions
  • Fulfill your commitment as a tester
  • Act as a Gaiscioch Should and be a proper representative of our family.

Remember when you are testing a title, you are a representative of the family. If you don't fulfill your obligations you will be giving a bad name to our family. When you sign up, you commit to playing that game whether you like it or not for the duration of the test. Sure life gets complicated at times and you can't make the tests. But let them know you'll be out. Don't just not show up. Flakes belong on Biscuits, not on testing teams!

Before You Sign Up Please Consider:

  1. The Game Will Not Be Done - It will be buggy, crappy, unplayable, and if it was live it would be bargin bin material. Expect that. It's your job to make it platinum. Your vision and the developers vision will bloom into an awesome title.
  2. Beta Testing Can Lead To Burn Out - One of the biggest risks we face as testers is that we burn out on the game before it even makes it live. This can be a good thing if we recognize it and identify what it is that makes us not want to play. We then need to report it to developers in time so they can fix it. If we lack desire to play during testing, players will certainly feel the same at launch. It is critical that we let them know what it is that turns us off of the game.
  3. Bound By Contract - When you sign up for an Test you will sign an NDA and be bound by contract not to speak of your involvement or anything you have seen. Take this seriously. Some companies can and will sue or press charges by violating this. The reason this is so strict is so that they have a chance to innovate before the competition gets wind of their systems. A game like WOW has made billions by cloning every neat innovative feature new titles have. They have to keep things secret as long as they can so the competition can't steal the idea before the game comes to market. It also hurts the game when people share ideas and perspectives from the game in it's infancy. Most players don't understand development and think games just magically appear when a leprechaun farts. They don't see the YEARS of development and testing that go into them. A lot can change in even 3 months. 
  4. If you test as Gaiscioch You Are Bound By Honor - If we find you are leaking information, we will remove you from the family and report you to the developer. We take this seriously as any breach or leak comes back on the people who introduced the player to the testing program. We will not tolerate loose lipped people or people who knowingly leak information. It goes against everything we stand for.  If you slip, we will correct you and try to clean up the mess afterwards. If you knowingly leak information you will be reported.
  5. Closed Testing is NOT for Play-Before-You-Buy - If you want to try before you buy wait for open beta. Don't waste a seat at the development table and make judgements on a game that isn't even assembled yet. It hurts the development process and wastes all of our time. If you are found to be doing this you will be added to the no-fly list and be prohibited from any test we are involved in. This no-fly list is provided to developers at the start of every test as a list of people not to allow into closed testing. You really don't want to be on this list.

Getting Involved

If you would like to be a member of the Gaiscioch Pioneers Testing team please click "Update Profile" on your command center when your logged in. All Lorgair or higher members will have access to the Testing Profile area and you can configure it as you like. Check back often for updates on various titles and opportunities.

Last Edited on: 12/04/2013 at 12:07 PM
"It's not the loot and accolades you walk away with, it's the memories and friendships that you cherish forever." - Foghladha
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Response:

Tiarna de na Iomproidh Buí
ScottE
Tiarna de na Iomproidh Buí
Replied On: 09/04/2013 at 02:18 PM PDT

Would this be strictly for a PC game basis or would consoles be included in the potential testing?

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Taoiseach de na Arach Glas
Foghladha
Taoiseach de na Arach Glas
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Replied On: 09/04/2013 at 02:41 PM PDT
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We rarely see console testing here ScottE. I have a lot of friends in the Game Dev business so you never know.

"It's not the loot and accolades you walk away with, it's the memories and friendships that you cherish forever." - Foghladha
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Tiarna de na Iomproidh Buí
ScottE
Tiarna de na Iomproidh Buí
Replied On: 09/04/2013 at 03:10 PM PDT

I just didn't want to apply and this include consoles and basically waste your time, lol.  Thanks for the clarification.

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Banlaoch de na Fhiaigh Dubh
Kaytlin
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Replied On: 09/04/2013 at 06:19 PM PDT

Would love to help. Don't own a console though so would have to limit it to pc envolvement.

Caitlin

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Taoiseach de na Arach Glas
Foghladha
Taoiseach de na Arach Glas
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Replied On: 09/04/2013 at 08:41 PM PDT
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This  has nothing to do with consoles.

"It's not the loot and accolades you walk away with, it's the memories and friendships that you cherish forever." - Foghladha
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Taoiseach de na Arach Glas
Foghladha
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Replied On: 09/04/2013 at 08:52 PM PDT
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You can sign up by setting it up under edit profile. Saighdear Rank and higher will see a testing profile tab.

"It's not the loot and accolades you walk away with, it's the memories and friendships that you cherish forever." - Foghladha
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Saighdiuir de na Faolchu
Locet
Saighdiuir de na Faolchu
Replied On: 09/04/2013 at 11:52 PM PDT

would love to help, but I guess I need to level up inside the guild to have access to that

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Taoiseach de na Arach Glas
Foghladha
Taoiseach de na Arach Glas
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Replied On: 09/05/2013 at 10:24 AM PDT
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Only reason we limit this to Saighdear+ is we want to make sure that those that are participating, know and act as they should with our reputation at stake. New members need some time to learn about how we operate before we put them in front of devs as representatives of our community.

"It's not the loot and accolades you walk away with, it's the memories and friendships that you cherish forever." - Foghladha
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Caomhnoir de na Fhiaigh
ThuddenBluhndr
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Replied On: 09/05/2013 at 12:42 PM PDT
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Would love to help in whatever capacity is needed. Plus, being stuck at home gives me plenty of testing time.

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Caomhnoir de na Fhiaigh
Wulfemeister
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Replied On: 09/05/2013 at 06:04 PM PDT
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I would like to help as well.  I've been  alpha/beta tester for various games, going all the way back to Ultima Online.

Thanks for your consideration!

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Seaimpin de na Capall Donn
Ragmar
Seaimpin de na Capall Donn
  • ESO: @Artrath96
Replied On: 09/05/2013 at 09:29 PM PDT
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Are you able to add an availability option Fog? 

Ex: Situation arises that prevents you from using a computer, things like extended business trips or other foreseeable real life issues. I'd like to accept the credo, realizing that atm I won't be offered opportunities due to being too young, (but I will be old enough soon), however I don't have time to participate and probably won't for the next few years, wrapping up school and starting college etc. And even though you have now read this long convoluted message and know that, others may not think about letting you know of such stuff and then they could be offered an opportunity and they would have to turn it down, and it'd look bad.

 

Do you get my point? I'm starting to confuse myself lol

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Diella
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Replied On: 09/06/2013 at 02:01 PM PDT

signed and agreed

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Ban Seaimpin de na Iomproidh Donn
Kittara
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Replied On: 09/07/2013 at 02:36 AM PDT

This is great Fog that companies are interested in coming to you. You've done a lot for the gaming world. I've tested so many games and posted so many posts during the testing and I do recognise burnout and know how important it is. A lot of people don't and just turn the other way. Thank you for posting this. Kittara

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Kitty
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Replied On: 11/22/2013 at 03:11 AM PST
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I filled out all the required information but my profile still shows as incomplete :c

"Be the player you want to meet".- Foghladha
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Ban Fili de na Ulchabhan Donn
Ckemikal
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Replied On: 11/22/2013 at 03:22 AM PST
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@ kitty

 I had that issue, too. I unhide my age, and that seemed to make it complete. 

"When you're always cold, sometimes you forget to put on your pants" ~Sakari, Winter's Bride
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Taoiseach de na Arach Glas
Foghladha
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Replied On: 11/22/2013 at 08:11 AM PST
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One thing I see a lot of is people using just their first name.  That prevents them as well. For ndas I need both names.

"It's not the loot and accolades you walk away with, it's the memories and friendships that you cherish forever." - Foghladha
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Kitty
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Replied On: 11/22/2013 at 08:36 AM PST
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My age is not hidden, all other information filled out as requested. What did I do wrong? *pouts*

"Be the player you want to meet".- Foghladha
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Ktzala
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Replied On: 11/22/2013 at 09:46 AM PST
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Profile updated :) 

 

*Kitty you might need to add your phone too, It was showing as incomplete until I added my phone number.

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Kitty
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Replied On: 11/22/2013 at 05:42 PM PST
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All the required information it's there, 

Visibility:
Members Only

Full Legal Name:

E-mail:

Phone:

Location:

Birthday:

 

So I have no clue what's wrong. If only there was a red sign on the missing info... :c



» Edited on: 2013-11-22 17:43:20



» Edited on: 2013-11-22 17:43:56

"Be the player you want to meet".- Foghladha
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Fozee
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Replied On: 11/24/2013 at 01:18 PM PST
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It's too bad my rank isn't high enough! I lead a group of the old WAR Core Testers, we've been in talks of creating a named testing group, but I'm just not sure how to start up such an operation. 

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Fine
Dacemage
Fine
Replied On: 11/24/2013 at 02:04 PM PST

Well if there is ever room, I would love to join the Beta testing for ESO. Really looking forward to this game, it has been a very long time since I was actually excited about a game release.

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Ridire de na Aracos Donn
Lithlius
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Replied On: 11/24/2013 at 04:52 PM PST
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I finished my testing profile do ineed anything else to be considered for the ESO Testing group?(i mean besides singing up for Beta)

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Taoiseach de na Arach Glas
Foghladha
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Replied On: 11/24/2013 at 06:13 PM PST
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For ESO i'm largely going off of people who say they are joining us in ESO. I've been asked to build a really big team so I will most likely get you all in. The only one's that wont get in are the people who burned me in GW2 and RIFT by testing once and deciding "The game wasn't for them". That type of attitude should not be involved in the development of games. Open beta sure, but closed beta where the game changes from test to test no. We need people who will see a problem, analyse a problem, and report the problem and help the developers build a game that Is for you.

"It's not the loot and accolades you walk away with, it's the memories and friendships that you cherish forever." - Foghladha
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Curadh de na Iomproidh Oráiste
Gideon
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Replied On: 11/27/2013 at 06:50 AM PST

Hey Fog I would love to get in on any of this testing. The opportunity to be able to talk directly with devs has my mind running already. Brings me back to my days of working at Gearbox Software.

These focus groups are always something i like to get in on, especially now that I have an awesome online family like you guys. Good ideas can really get you places in the game industry and sometimes those guys need some input and that extra think tank that we can provide.

So if you've got room please consider me for these, I would love to try and help make a game better that I plan spending so many hours in. I only wish I couldve done this with GW2. 

Anyway, thanks for your consideration and all your hard work you put into this guild.



» Edited on: 2013-11-27 06:53:07

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Tiarna de na Aracos Corcra
Booie
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Replied On: 11/27/2013 at 10:34 AM PST
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There is a picture for any scenario, even beta testers.  Who knew. :)



» Edited on: 2013-11-27 10:36:29

"A delayed game is eventually good, a bad game is bad forever" - Shigeru Miyamoto
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Fine de na Sailetheach
Madraider
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Replied On: 11/27/2013 at 11:36 AM PST
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I would be happy to get involved and help out with testing or any other way that I can help the guild.

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Kitty
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Replied On: 11/27/2013 at 04:21 PM PST
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I would love to get in the testing, as South American I don't get many invites for beta testings, maybe if this time they are seeking people from my area they will ask Fog first :3

I'm not in a real hurry to test TESO, there are many good testers out there, I just want to set up my profile correctly.

"Be the player you want to meet".- Foghladha
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Fym
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Replied On: 11/27/2013 at 07:54 PM PST

I had signed up via the ESO website before I found this post.  I just updated my information and clicked on the agreement.

My play time is limited to a few hours in the evening.  If you think that isn't sufficient to be useful, then I will understand if you don't want me on the team.

Fym

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Saighdiuir de na Sailetheach Gorm
SkeletonJack
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Replied On: 11/28/2013 at 04:28 AM PST
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If you're not Saighdear yet, where do we put our names in the hat for testing ESO Fog?  You mentioned you wanted to get everyone in for a large group above.

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Ktzala
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Replied On: 11/28/2013 at 07:06 AM PST
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*raises hand*

Currently and until March or so I will have plenty of free time, I just hope that there is not a problem that sometimes I am in Mexico and sometimes I am in Texas.

Doesn't matter what I am still joining GSCH in Chapter 5, I love The elder scrolls and I love GSCH. :)

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Fine
Lioneas
Fine
Replied On: 11/30/2013 at 10:37 AM PST

How could I possibly get to the level of Saighdear without being in a game?  I mean I suppose I can reload Guild Wars 2, but I was kinda burnt out on it.  And I would probably have to switch servers to join you guys.  Is there any other way to rank up quickly?

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Taoiseach de na Arach Glas
Foghladha
Taoiseach de na Arach Glas
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Replied On: 11/30/2013 at 10:57 AM PST
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Nope, players level up by participation. However if its eso your after chamces are good to get involved regardless. I will be trying to get everyone involved I can. Just make sure you have your account flagged for eso.

"It's not the loot and accolades you walk away with, it's the memories and friendships that you cherish forever." - Foghladha
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Taoiseach de na Arach Glas
Foghladha
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  • GW2: Foghladha.2506
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Replied On: 11/30/2013 at 11:22 AM PST
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If you would like to test games with us be sure to join us second saturday of december for our Testing with Gaiscioch livestream.

"It's not the loot and accolades you walk away with, it's the memories and friendships that you cherish forever." - Foghladha
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Fine
Lioneas
Fine
Replied On: 11/30/2013 at 02:42 PM PST

Thanks Fog.  I'll try to be there, have two jobs right now so probably wont be able to make it.  Yet I will be dropping one here in a couple months.  So after that I should be more available.

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Lucitia
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  • ESO: @lucitia
Replied On: 12/02/2013 at 09:19 AM PST

I will be joining you guys when ESO comes out. If there's anyway possible I would like to be included for list of people beta testing. 

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Fether
Curadh de na Faolchu
Replied On: 12/03/2013 at 04:49 AM PST

Thanks for setting this up. Always willing to test games out, personally I am more interested in Wildstar than anything else. =-)

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Foghladha
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Replied On: 12/04/2013 at 12:40 PM PST
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Dropped the rank requirement to Lorgair and removed games that are not responding to contact.

"It's not the loot and accolades you walk away with, it's the memories and friendships that you cherish forever." - Foghladha
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Kitty
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Replied On: 12/05/2013 at 08:50 AM PST
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Thank you Fog, my profile shows complete now :3ç

"Be the player you want to meet".- Foghladha
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Locet
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Replied On: 12/05/2013 at 01:21 PM PST

Profile updated. I hope I can get in and help :)

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Tayto
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  • GW2: isredel.4302
Replied On: 12/06/2013 at 08:59 PM PST
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For Alpha and Focus groups, will any of us need to have any programming knowledge?

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Foghladha
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Replied On: 12/06/2013 at 09:50 PM PST
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No. You just need to be a gamer. Nothing annoys a developer like a person who asumes they know how to code something. Every game is setup differently. Knowing how to code can sometimes put you at a disadvantage as you will be over thinking things.

"It's not the loot and accolades you walk away with, it's the memories and friendships that you cherish forever." - Foghladha
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Tayto
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Replied On: 12/06/2013 at 10:10 PM PST
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This is one of those moments where ignorance is actually bliss!

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